BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A Baltimore County police officer appears to have shot and killed himself in his Bel Air home, according to the Harford County Sheriff’s Office.
Roads were closed and class was delayed three hours at Patterson Mill Middle and High schools Monday morning because deputies were trying to make contact and negotiate with James Ward, who was arrested and suspended without pay after a barricade that ended in gunshots in April.
In that incident, deputies first responded for a domestic dispute involving a suicidal subject who was drinking heavily. Schools were dismissed early while Bright Oaks community residents were forced to take shelter. Ward ended up being shot non-fatally by deputies after a standoff that lasted a few hours. The Sheriff’s Office said Ward fired first.
Ward was identified at that time as a 19-year veteran with the force who worked in the White Marsh precinct.
This morning, deputies first reported to the home in the 2000 block of Stratton Court around 1:34 a.m. for a reported of a suicidal person.
They tried but failed to make contact with Ward, then established a perimeter around the home. A special response team was called to the scene.
After several hours of failed attempts to contact Ward, members of the Special Response Team entered the house and found Ward’s body.
No deputies fired any shots and no deputies, or community members, were injured during the incident.
Investigators and Forensic Service Unit Detectives from the Harford County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division are conducting a comprehensive investigation.
All schools in the surrounding area are now operating on normal dismissal schedules and all roads have been opened.